Aprilia is an Italian motorcycle company, one of the marques owned by Piaggio.
Aprilia was founded after the Second World War by Cavaliere Alberto Beggio, as a bicycle production factory at Noale, Italy in the province of Venice. Alberto’s son, Ivano Beggio, took over the helm of the company in 1968 and constructed a 50 cc "motorcycle" with a dozen or so collaborators. The first production Aprilia mopeds were named Colibrì, Daniela and Packi. Aprilia later produced a motocross bike in 1970 called the Scarabeo. Produced until the end of the 1970s, the Scarabeo came in 50 and 125 cc versions.
In the 1980s Aprilia added enduro, trials and road bikes of between 50 and 600 cc. In 1981 Aprilia introduced the TL320 trials machine. In 1983 Aprilia launched to St 125 road bike. In 1984 Aprilia launched an improved model called STX, and an enduro, called the ET 50.
In 1985, Aprilia started outsourcing engines for some models to the Austrian company Rotax. In 1985 Aprilia launched a 125 STX and 350 STX. In 1986 Aprilia launched the AF1; a small sports model, and the Tuareg; a large tanked bike for African rallies like the Dakar Rally.
Aprilia has 124 times won 125 and 250 cc class Grand Prix, 15 Road Racing World Championship titles, and 16 European speed titles. Many world champions started on Aprilia such as Biaggi, Capirossi, Gramigni, Locatelli, Sakata and Rossi.
Also in the 1990s, Aprilia entered the scooter market starting in 1990 with Italy’s first all-plastic scooter, the Amico. In 1992, Aprilia introduced the Amico LK and the two stroke Pegaso 125, both with catalytic converters. In 1993 Aprilia launched a large diameter wheel scooter reusing the name Scarabeo with a four-stroke, four-valve engine. Later Aprilia launched more scooters such as the Leonardo, the SR and the Gulliver.
In 1995, Aprilia commissioned Philippe Starck to design the Motò which was shown in New York’s Modern Art Museum. Also in 1995 Aprilia launched the two stroke RS 125 and RS 250 sports bikes. In 1998 Aprilia launched what is its current flagship model the RSV Mille, a 1000cc V-Twin Superbike, and the Falco, a 1000cc V-Twin sport tourer with emphasis on sport. Both bikes used a variation of a Rotax 1000cc engine.
During 2000, Aprilia acquired Moto-Guzzi and Laverda, both historic heritage Italian marques. In 2000 Aprilia launched the 50 cc DiTech (Direct Injection Technology) two stroke engine for scooters which provides high mileage and low emissions, and also the RST Futura, a sport tourer, and the ETV 1000 Caponord; an adventure touring motorcycle. Both of these latter two motorcycles used a variation of the Rotax 1000 cc V-Twin.
Most recently, in 2003, Aprilia launched the RSV Mille Tuono which was essentially an RSV Mille with motorcross-style high handlebars and only a small headlight fairing. Most of the major motorcycle magazines picked it for the best bike of the year. In 2004 Aprilia was acquired by Piaggio & C. SpA, to form the world’s fourth largest motorcycle group with 1.5 billion Euro in sales, an annual production capacity of over 600,000 vehicles, and a presence in 50 countries.
Despite being a relatively small company by global motorcycling standards, Aprilia is very active in motorcycle sports. It contests many Road Racing formulae, including the FIM 125 cc World Championship, the FIM 250 cc World Championship, and the now-defunct FIM 500 cc World Championship.
Mon, 13 May 2013
Eugene Laverty and Marco Melandri split a pair of victories at Monza but the most biggest news from the World Superbike weekend was a strange series of appeals after Race Two that saw Tom Sykes finish third, relegated to fourth and then reinstated on the final step of the podium. The unusual mix-up occurred after Sykes, sitting in third place, ran off track and into the run off area on Turn 5 on his final lap. The Kawasaki rider returned to the track again in third place where he finished ahead of Aprilia‘s Sylvain Guintoli.
Thu, 09 May 2013
Saturday, May 4 marked the 5th annual Quail Motorcycle Gathering in Carmel, California. With such a diverse collection of historical, rare and outrageous motorcycles, the Quail is an event we thoroughly enjoyed attending last year. To commemorate the occasion, this year’s guest of honor was none other than three-time 500cc Grand Prix world champion, and local area resident, Wayne Rainey.
Mon, 06 May 2013
The Piaggio Group reported an 11.6% drop in net sales for the first quarter of 2013, the result of a struggling economy and unseasonably cold weather in Europe and a flatlining two-wheeler market in Vietnam. There was however some good news in North America, Vespa sales in India and a 27.8% increase in Moto Guzzi sales. According to the company’s first quarter report, Piaggio reported net sales of 303.4 million euros (US$396.8 million), down from net sales of 343.1 million euros reported the same quarter of 2012.
Mon, 29 Apr 2013
Tom Sykes earned his first win of the 2013 season and came a hair short of a double victory at the World Superbike Championship round at Assen in the Netherlands. Traditionally a fast starter and qualifier, Sykes started on the pole once again at Assen and had strong starts in both races. But unlike the first two rounds where he started strong before fading, the Kawasaki factory rider was able to remain at the front in both races at Assen and earn some valuable championship points.
Mon, 29 Apr 2013
Aprilia dealerships nationwide are offering motorcyclists the opportunity to test ride a 2013 Tuono V4 APRC, RSV4 R APRC ABS and the RSV4 Factory APRC ABS SBK SE. To locate a participating dealer and schedule a test ride visit www.apriliausa.com and fill out an online appointment request. After filling out the request you’ll receive a confirmed test ride date and a personalized product introduction.
Mon, 15 Apr 2013
BMW Motorrad Goldbet racer Chaz Davies scored his first career World Superbike double victory, taking both races at Spain’s Aragon circuit. The wins were the second and third of Davies’ WSBK career (the first came last year at Nurburgring for the ParkinGo Aprilia team) and the second ever double in the series for BMW. The Welsh rider and former AMA Pro Racing competitor has had some success at Aragon, getting his first career WSBK podium at the Spanish track in 2012.
Fri, 12 Apr 2013
AMA Pro Racing announced a new class for Flat Track racing designed to provide a new stepping stone for up-and-coming Pro-licensed racers, replacing the Pro Singles class in 2014. The new class, to be called Basic Twins, is more or less a revival of the Basic Expert Twins division that ran during the 2007 and 2008 seasons, but dropped when the Pro Singles class was introduced for 2009. The new class will give young racers a chance to showcase their skills on Twins, easing their transition to eventually enter the Grand National Expert Twins class.
Thu, 21 Mar 2013
Aprilia is going after Ducati‘s Multistrada big time with the new Caponord 1200. It’s taken the V-Twin from its Dorsoduro 1200 model and tuned it for touring perfection with torque in all the right places. The Caponord 1200 is comfortable with a not too high seat and very good ergonomics.
Mon, 04 Mar 2013
Earlier this year, we reported on Dakar racer Hugo Payen and his X-rated sponsor, pornographer Marc Dourcel. Payen seems to have started a trend as British MotoGP team Paul Bird Motorsports has signed a sponsorship deal with erotic movie website MinxFlix.com. The website will back PBM’s Michael Laverty and Yonny Hernandez who will ride on CRT machines featuring Aprilia V4 engines and its own proprietary chassis developed with builder GPMS.
Wed, 27 Feb 2013
The Piaggio Group reported a 7.3% decrease in net sales and a 9.0% decrease in net profit for 2012, thanks in large part to a sharp decline in demand in Europe including an all-time low for motorcycle sales in Italy. Piaggio reported net sales of 1.406 billion euros (US$1.842 billion) in 2012, down from 1.516 billion euros in 2011. Motorcycles and scooters accounted for net sales of 993.3 million euros (US$1.301 billion), a 3.1% decrease from 1.025 billion euros reported for 2011.